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Robert Richardson on Rigdon, Campbell & Mormonism!

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  • rlbaty50
    (I believe Richardson was the son-in-law of Campbell.-RLBaty) http://www.mun.ca/rels/restmov/texts/rrichardson/mac/MAC210.HTM Memoirs of Alexander Campbell
    Message 1 of 5 , Jun 30, 2012
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      (I believe Richardson was the son-in-law of Campbell.-RLBaty)

      http://www.mun.ca/rels/restmov/texts/rrichardson/mac/MAC210.HTM

      Memoirs of Alexander Campbell
      Volume II. (1869)
      by Robert Richardson

      (excerpts)

      C H A P T E R X .

      Mormonism--Its exposure. . . .

      TOWARD the close of this year (1830) the delusion of Mormonism
      began its course in Northern Ohio. Chief amongst its promoters appeared Sydney Rigdon, who was believed, upon good evidence,
      to have been also its originator.

      Captivating as a public speaker by his fluency and his exuberant fancy, he had depended upon these superficial endowments for popularity and success.

      In private he had been found petulant, unreliable and
      ungovernable in his passions, and his wayward temper, his
      extravagant stories and his habit of self-assertion had
      prevented him from attaining influence as a religious teacher
      among the disciples.

      He was ambitious of distinction, without the energy and
      industry necessary to secure it, and jealous of the reputation
      of others, without the ability to compete with them.

      Floating upon the tide of popular excitement, he was disposed
      to catch at anything which, without demanding labor, might serve
      for his advancement, and was naturally led to seek in deception
      the success which he found denied to indolence.

      It appears that, while living in Pittsburg, he was connected
      with one of the printing-offices, and obtained access to the manuscript of a romance written by a former Presbyterian
      preacher--a Solomon Spaulding-- [344] who, adopting the style
      of the Bible history, had, for his amusement, given a fanciful account of the nations inhabiting Canaan before the time of
      Joshua, and described, with great minuteness, their modes of
      life, wars, migrations, etc.

      He attributed also in it the settling of North America to the
      ten lost tribes, and, giving to his work the title of" Lost Manuscript Found," was wont to read portions of it frequently
      to his friends.

      Having copied or obtained possession of this manuscript, Rigdon
      seems to have secretly occupied himself during several years in altering and arranging it to suit his purposes; and discovering,
      at Palmyra, New York, as early as 1827, a suitable coadjutor in
      the person of Joseph Smith, a pretended fortune-teller and
      discoverer of hidden treasure, noted for his idleness and love
      of everything marvelous and mysterious, he arranged with him the
      plan of future operations.

      Accordingly, in 1830, it was duly announced that Smith had by
      an express revelation disinterred certain golden plates, on
      which were inscribed, in the "reformed Egyptian character,"
      important divine communications, giving an account of the ten
      lost tribes, the origin of the North American Indians and
      revelations designed to usher in "the latter days."

      These plates Smith professed to have the power to decipher and translate by means of translucent pebbles which had been provided
      for the purpose, and by the aid of polygraphic angels; and a book
      in manuscript was speedily produced, called the "Book of Mormon,"
      an edition of which was at once printed at the expense of a Martin Harris, who was so credulous as to believe in Smith's pretensions, and who alone, of those concerned, was able to defray the expense
      of publication.

      Meanwhile, Rigdon had been for some time diligently engaged in endeavoring, by obscure hints and glowing [345] millennial
      theories, to excite the imaginations of his hearers, and in
      seeking by fanciful interpretations of Scripture to prepare
      the minds of the churches of Northern Ohio for something extraordinary in the near future. He sought especially in
      private to convince certain influential persons that, along
      with the primitive gospel, supernatural gifts and miracles
      ought to be restored, and that, as at the beginning, all things should be held in common.

      From his want of personal influence, however, he failed in disseminating his views, except to a very limited extent.

      In Mentor, where he resided, he was quite unsuccessful, but
      was more fortunate in Kirtland, the adjoining town, where a flourishing church became much disturbed and unsettled by
      his plausible theories and brilliant declamations.

      Immediately upon the publication of the "Book of Mormon,"
      Smith organized his dupes and abettors at Palmyra into the
      "Church of Latter-Day Saints," and sent forth his "apostles"
      to convert the people.

      Two of these, Cowdery and Pratt, soon made their appearance
      in Mentor, and were received as old acquaintances by Rigdon,
      who at once publicly endorsed their claims, and, with several
      others, was immersed into the new faith, which he immediately endeavored to propagate at Palmyra.

      The people there, however, knowing too well the character of
      Smith to believe that he could be charged with a heavenly
      message, treated the whole affair with contempt and ridicule.

      It became necessary, therefore, to change the basis of
      operations to some region where Smith was unknown, and the
      point selected was Kirtland, where the minds of the people
      had already become to some extent prepared by Rigdon, and
      where about one-half of the members of the church were soon
      led away into the delusion and filled with the [346] wildest fanaticism. Mormon "elders" and "apostles" were speedily sent
      forth, who traversed Northern Ohio and gained many proselytes
      among the ignorant and superstitious, and some even among
      persons of intelligence, who had been filled with vague
      expectations of a speedy millennium.

      It is unnecessary to relate particularly the progress of this
      gross delusion or the history of its leaders, who, after
      erecting a temple and establishing a bank at Kirtland, found
      it necessary to emigrate to Independence, Missouri, from whence, largely increased in numbers, they were soon driven to Illinois, where they erected another temple and built the city of Nauvoo.

      Nor is it necessary to detail their introduction of polygamy,
      their establishment of a grand and successful system of missions throughout the world, their fortunes in Illinois, where open war
      with the citizens was prevented only by the voluntary surrender
      of Smith and others to the civil authorities at the instance of
      the governor; or the subsequent death of Smith at the hands of
      a mob in the prison to which he had been committed for
      safe-keeping.

      Suffice it to say, that upon his death Rigdon and Brigham Young disputed the right to the succession, and Young prevailing,
      Rigdon was expelled from the community and retired into the
      interior of New York, where he has since lived in obscurity.

      From the first moment of its appearance, Mr. Campbell endeavored
      to stay the progress of this imposture and to expose the villainy
      of those concerned in it.

      Having obtained a copy of the "Book of Mormon," he published both
      in the Harbinger and in a separate tract of twelve pages a brief analysis of its contents and character, laying bare its flagrant falsehoods and its contemptible absurdities.

      The timely appearance of this tract, the active opposition of
      the intelligent preachers on the Reserve, and a visit which Mr. Campbell paid in June to Northern Ohio, where he spent twenty-two days, delivered eighteen discourses and baptized twenty-seven persons, greatly contributed to expose this shameless imposition
      soon after its first appearance, and to put a stop to its progress
      in the reforming churches, among which, indeed, with the exception
      of the one at Kirtland, it was far less successful than with the Methodists and other popular denominations, with whose views of special spiritual operations and communications it possessed a greater affinity.

      ------------------------------------------------
      ------------------------------------------------
    • Ray Ausban
      In the early 1980 s I attended a discussion series on the origin of the Church of Christ hosted by the local Church of Christ. It was five nights and two hours
      Message 2 of 5 , Jul 1, 2012
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        In the early 1980's I attended a discussion series on the origin of the Church of Christ hosted by the local Church of Christ. It was five nights and two hours each. I was already LDS at the time, but I walked away with a good deal of respect for Alexander Campbell in his part in establishing this variation of Christianity.
         
        Now, that I have read some of his own words and not simply hearing a devotee's description, I see what a demented and twisted mind he really had! It is no wonder that every Church of Christ member I have talked with does not bring up their illustrious founder and knows very little about him!
         
        I see why Rigdon abandoned the Campbellites!

        From: rlbaty50 <rlbaty@...>
        To: Maury_and_Baty@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Saturday, June 30, 2012 10:08 PM
        Subject: [M & B] Robert Richardson on Rigdon, Campbell & Mormonism!

         
        (I believe Richardson was the son-in-law of Campbell.-RLBaty)

        http://www.mun.ca/rels/restmov/texts/rrichardson/mac/MAC210.HTM

        Memoirs of Alexander Campbell
        Volume II. (1869)
        by Robert Richardson

        (excerpts)

        C H A P T E R X .

        Mormonism--Its exposure. . . .

        TOWARD the close of this year (1830) the delusion of Mormonism
        began its course in Northern Ohio. Chief amongst its promoters appeared Sydney Rigdon, who was believed, upon good evidence,
        to have been also its originator.

        Captivating as a public speaker by his fluency and his exuberant fancy, he had depended upon these superficial endowments for popularity and success.

        In private he had been found petulant, unreliable and
        ungovernable in his passions, and his wayward temper, his
        extravagant stories and his habit of self-assertion had
        prevented him from attaining influence as a religious teacher
        among the disciples.

        He was ambitious of distinction, without the energy and
        industry necessary to secure it, and jealous of the reputation
        of others, without the ability to compete with them.

        Floating upon the tide of popular excitement, he was disposed
        to catch at anything which, without demanding labor, might serve
        for his advancement, and was naturally led to seek in deception
        the success which he found denied to indolence.

        It appears that, while living in Pittsburg, he was connected
        with one of the printing-offices, and obtained access to the manuscript of a romance written by a former Presbyterian
        preacher--a Solomon Spaulding-- [344] who, adopting the style
        of the Bible history, had, for his amusement, given a fanciful account of the nations inhabiting Canaan before the time of
        Joshua, and described, with great minuteness, their modes of
        life, wars, migrations, etc.

        He attributed also in it the settling of North America to the
        ten lost tribes, and, giving to his work the title of" Lost Manuscript Found," was wont to read portions of it frequently
        to his friends.

        Having copied or obtained possession of this manuscript, Rigdon
        seems to have secretly occupied himself during several years in altering and arranging it to suit his purposes; and discovering,
        at Palmyra, New York, as early as 1827, a suitable coadjutor in
        the person of Joseph Smith, a pretended fortune-teller and
        discoverer of hidden treasure, noted for his idleness and love
        of everything marvelous and mysterious, he arranged with him the
        plan of future operations.

        Accordingly, in 1830, it was duly announced that Smith had by
        an express revelation disinterred certain golden plates, on
        which were inscribed, in the "reformed Egyptian character,"
        important divine communications, giving an account of the ten
        lost tribes, the origin of the North American Indians and
        revelations designed to usher in "the latter days."

        These plates Smith professed to have the power to decipher and translate by means of translucent pebbles which had been provided
        for the purpose, and by the aid of polygraphic angels; and a book
        in manuscript was speedily produced, called the "Book of Mormon,"
        an edition of which was at once printed at the expense of a Martin Harris, who was so credulous as to believe in Smith's pretensions, and who alone, of those concerned, was able to defray the expense
        of publication.

        Meanwhile, Rigdon had been for some time diligently engaged in endeavoring, by obscure hints and glowing [345] millennial
        theories, to excite the imaginations of his hearers, and in
        seeking by fanciful interpretations of Scripture to prepare
        the minds of the churches of Northern Ohio for something extraordinary in the near future. He sought especially in
        private to convince certain influential persons that, along
        with the primitive gospel, supernatural gifts and miracles
        ought to be restored, and that, as at the beginning, all things should be held in common.

        From his want of personal influence, however, he failed in disseminating his views, except to a very limited extent.

        In Mentor, where he resided, he was quite unsuccessful, but
        was more fortunate in Kirtland, the adjoining town, where a flourishing church became much disturbed and unsettled by
        his plausible theories and brilliant declamations.

        Immediately upon the publication of the "Book of Mormon,"
        Smith organized his dupes and abettors at Palmyra into the
        "Church of Latter-Day Saints," and sent forth his "apostles"
        to convert the people.

        Two of these, Cowdery and Pratt, soon made their appearance
        in Mentor, and were received as old acquaintances by Rigdon,
        who at once publicly endorsed their claims, and, with several
        others, was immersed into the new faith, which he immediately endeavored to propagate at Palmyra.

        The people there, however, knowing too well the character of
        Smith to believe that he could be charged with a heavenly
        message, treated the whole affair with contempt and ridicule.

        It became necessary, therefore, to change the basis of
        operations to some region where Smith was unknown, and the
        point selected was Kirtland, where the minds of the people
        had already become to some extent prepared by Rigdon, and
        where about one-half of the members of the church were soon
        led away into the delusion and filled with the [346] wildest fanaticism. Mormon "elders" and "apostles" were speedily sent
        forth, who traversed Northern Ohio and gained many proselytes
        among the ignorant and superstitious, and some even among
        persons of intelligence, who had been filled with vague
        expectations of a speedy millennium.

        It is unnecessary to relate particularly the progress of this
        gross delusion or the history of its leaders, who, after
        erecting a temple and establishing a bank at Kirtland, found
        it necessary to emigrate to Independence, Missouri, from whence, largely increased in numbers, they were soon driven to Illinois, where they erected another temple and built the city of Nauvoo.

        Nor is it necessary to detail their introduction of polygamy,
        their establishment of a grand and successful system of missions throughout the world, their fortunes in Illinois, where open war
        with the citizens was prevented only by the voluntary surrender
        of Smith and others to the civil authorities at the instance of
        the governor; or the subsequent death of Smith at the hands of
        a mob in the prison to which he had been committed for
        safe-keeping.

        Suffice it to say, that upon his death Rigdon and Brigham Young disputed the right to the succession, and Young prevailing,
        Rigdon was expelled from the community and retired into the
        interior of New York, where he has since lived in obscurity.

        From the first moment of its appearance, Mr. Campbell endeavored
        to stay the progress of this imposture and to expose the villainy
        of those concerned in it.

        Having obtained a copy of the "Book of Mormon," he published both
        in the Harbinger and in a separate tract of twelve pages a brief analysis of its contents and character, laying bare its flagrant falsehoods and its contemptible absurdities.

        The timely appearance of this tract, the active opposition of
        the intelligent preachers on the Reserve, and a visit which Mr. Campbell paid in June to Northern Ohio, where he spent twenty-two days, delivered eighteen discourses and baptized twenty-seven persons, greatly contributed to expose this shameless imposition
        soon after its first appearance, and to put a stop to its progress
        in the reforming churches, among which, indeed, with the exception
        of the one at Kirtland, it was far less successful than with the Methodists and other popular denominations, with whose views of special spiritual operations and communications it possessed a greater affinity.

        ------------------------------------------------
        ------------------------------------------------



      • rlbaty50
        Ray, While I have reached different conclusions, I am glad I was able to bring something to your mind that you had not considered before. You are welcome.
        Message 3 of 5 , Jul 1, 2012
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          Ray,

          While I have reached different conclusions, I am glad I was able to bring something to your mind that you had not considered before.

          You are welcome.

          Maybe we'll get into some of the many details for discussion one of these days if there are particulars in which we share a mutual interest in discussing.

          Too bad Rigdon didn't take Campbell up on the invitation for a public discussion on the merits of Mormonism.

          By the way, are you familiar with the Farnsworth(Mormon)/Gatewood(ChurchofChrist) debate I mentioned earlier? From back in the 1940's.

          Sincerely,
          Robert Baty

          --- In Maury_and_Baty@yahoogroups.com,
          http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Maury_and_Baty/message/27612
          Ray Ausban <rayausban@...> wrote:

          > In the early 1980's I attended a discussion
          > series on the origin of the Church of Christ
          > hosted by the local Church of Christ.
          >
          > It was five nights and two hours each.
          >
          > I was already LDS at the time, but I walked
          > away with a good deal of respect for Alexander
          > Campbell in his part in establishing this
          > variation of Christianity.
          >  
          > Now, that I have read some of his own words
          > and not simply hearing a devotee's description,
          > I see what a demented and twisted mind he really
          > had!
          >
          > It is no wonder that every Church of Christ
          > member I have talked with does not bring up
          > their illustrious founder and knows very
          > little about him!
          >  
          > I see why Rigdon abandoned the Campbellites!

          ------------------------------------------
          ------------------------------------------
        • Ray Ausban
          Robert,   1) Thank you for bringing it up.   2) No, never heard of this debate. Is it on-line?   3) Does the notice from Yahoo mean your group is going to
          Message 4 of 5 , Jul 1, 2012
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            Robert,
             
            1) Thank you for bringing it up.
             
            2) No, never heard of this debate. Is it on-line?
             
            3) Does the notice from Yahoo mean your group is going to be deleted this week?
             
            4) You recommended I review some of Todd's old posts. Is there an easy way to search this within those thousands of message postings?
             
            Thanks - Ray
             

            From: rlbaty50 <rlbaty@...>
            To: Maury_and_Baty@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Sunday, July 1, 2012 3:58 PM
            Subject: Re: [M & B] Robert Richardson on Rigdon, Campbell & Mormonism!

             
            Ray,

            While I have reached different conclusions, I am glad I was able to bring something to your mind that you had not considered before.

            You are welcome.

            Maybe we'll get into some of the many details for discussion one of these days if there are particulars in which we share a mutual interest in discussing.

            Too bad Rigdon didn't take Campbell up on the invitation for a public discussion on the merits of Mormonism.

            By the way, are you familiar with the Farnsworth(Mormon)/Gatewood(ChurchofChrist) debate I mentioned earlier? From back in the 1940's.

            Sincerely,
            Robert Baty

            --- In mailto:Maury_and_Baty%40yahoogroups.com,
            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Maury_and_Baty/message/27612
            Ray Ausban <rayausban@...> wrote:

            > In the early 1980's I attended a discussion
            > series on the origin of the Church of Christ
            > hosted by the local Church of Christ.
            >
            > It was five nights and two hours each.
            >
            > I was already LDS at the time, but I walked
            > away with a good deal of respect for Alexander
            > Campbell in his part in establishing this
            > variation of Christianity.
            >  
            > Now, that I have read some of his own words
            > and not simply hearing a devotee's description,
            > I see what a demented and twisted mind he really
            > had!
            >
            > It is no wonder that every Church of Christ
            > member I have talked with does not bring up
            > their illustrious founder and knows very
            > little about him!
            >  
            > I see why Rigdon abandoned the Campbellites!

            ------------------------------------------
            ------------------------------------------



          • rlbaty50
            Ray, You are welcome. I don t know that it s on-line, but it appears to be available on Amazon. The YAHOO! notice has to do with a feature of these lists
            Message 5 of 5 , Jul 1, 2012
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              Ray,

              You are welcome.

              I don't know that it's on-line, but it appears to be available on Amazon.

              The YAHOO! notice has to do with a feature of these lists which, as far as I know, no one here uses.

              The discussion feature should survive without being affected.

              I am not that good at searching the archives myself, Ray.

              You should experiment with key words and see what comes up.

              Maybe Todd can help you with specifics, or me, if there is something in particular you want to refer to in one or more of his prior posts.

              Sincerely,
              Robert Baty

              --- In Maury_and_Baty@yahoogroups.com,
              http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Maury_and_Baty/message/27615
              Ray Ausban <rayausban@...> wrote:

              > Robert,
              >  
              > 1) Thank you for bringing it up.
              >  
              > 2) No, never heard of this debate.
              > Is it on-line?
              >  
              > 3) Does the notice from Yahoo mean your
              > group is going to be deleted this week?
              >  
              > 4) You recommended I review some of Todd's
              > old posts. Is there an easy way to search
              > this within those thousands of message postings?
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